Today's Free Picks for
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Posted at 1:45 PM EST and odds are subject to change.
Washington +135 over Baltimore
7:05 PM EST. After winning five of six games, the Nats have dropped five of six so once again their stock is dropping while the Orioles are in the thick of a playoff race. Baltimore’s chances are slipping away quickly so these games are in the “must win” category. You don’t think Washington is aware they have a chance to put the O’s out of their misery? Of course they’re aware and now they get to play the enjoyable role of the spoiler. In a 50/50 proposition at worst, Washington is a great play here. Incidentally, despite losing five of six, the Nats are scoring runs (50 to be exact in their past nine games).
Dean Kremer has a misleading 3.23 ERA after 16 starts and one relief appearance. His best asset is his control but following anyone, he is not. He has 71 K’s in 95 innings. His weak K% has the backing of his weak swing and miss rate, indicating little chance of improvement. Remember, this is a starter that went 0-7 with a 6.99 ERA in 54 innings for the O’s last year. His extreme fly-ball rate coupled with high HR/F ruins any chance of success over an extended period of time. We repeat, his 3.23 ERA is a mirage, as his 5.10 xERA will attest to.
We like Cory Abbott (RHP - WAS) as a solid under the radar proposition. He was once considered a good prospect in the Cubs organization and he pitched 17 innings in the majors in 2021. However, he struggled in the big leagues and upper minors and the Cubs eventually sent him to the Giants in April 2022. San Francisco later put him on waivers and was claimed by the Nationals in May. The former 2nd round pick in 2017 has some good skills. With a clean, repeatable delivery and durable arm, he relies on a deep repertoire and natural deception. Abbott has been able to register strikeouts. He has 13 K’s with just two walks issued over his last 15 frames at this level. His fastball mostly sits between 91-95 mph and he mixes in a solid-average slider, curveball, cutter and change-up. It’s been almost two months since he was called up. With 32 innings under his belt to go along with a nice 2.35/3.85 ERA/xERA split over the past month, his confidence is growing exponentially. Wrong side favored.
Washington +135 (Risking 2 units - To Win: 2.70)